Reading Mi

Location: Guangzhou, China
Client: Shenzhen Friendship Book City Co., Ltd.
Area: 2500sqm

“Reading Mi” is a cultural concept bookstore founded by the "Yoyi Book" brand in 2014. Every store integrates reading, cultural creations, coffee, parent-child, social activities and other diversified formats together. The business positioning of "family / middle class" aims to provide a new cultural space for urban families.

Located in the open atrium space of a shopping mall in Foshan, China, this bookstore faced the challenge of an on-site space to create a haven of calm amidst the hustle and bustle. The brand name '覔' is an ancient font, which means to explore and seek. In Chinese culture, the concept of 'hidden' is endowed with the philosophical connotation of wisdom and life. Where there is a blank and invisible place, it often shows the most sincere existence and hides the deepest peace, which becomes the design concept of this project. The design team pushed to create an introverted, holistic environment. Under the warm background tones, different spatial functions are defined by a series of abstract book-flipping gestures.

Entrance hall
The entrance hall is like a "hall of knowledge", with a roof made of wooden slats, hanging high in the sky like an open book in the shape of a herringbone. This double-height space serves as a starting point for customers to purify their minds and is particularly conducive to contemplation, while those on the upper floors can also glimpse the endless books and treasures below.

A multifunctional 100-seat open-plan theatre extends from the entrance hall, with a white-stone stairway that shields the activities by the roof shape of a half-open book, providing a calm and relaxation space for casual reading, press conferences and group study activities.

Retail Zone 
The dimly lit comprehensive retail area and the symmetrical arrangement of book displays provide a tranquil shopping environment for knowledge exploration. The ceiling sculpture inspired by paper art further enhances the humanistic atmosphere of the overall space.

Family Zone 
An independent area of geometric curves provides a calm and imaginative reading space for children and parents, and the semi-open bookshelves are placed with thousands of age-specific picture books and themed children's books. The central courtyard space equipped with theater lights provides a platform for family interaction to experience storytelling and drama performances, allowing parents and children to spend a quiet time together.

The tranquil atmosphere continues to the 50 free reading seats and private study rooms under tree-like coverage, making every reader a unique scenery of the cafe, reflecting the design pursuit of starting from humanistic care and returning to the user's feelings, focusing on the relationship between people & space completes the concept of "覔".

Bookstore is a testimony to the full soul of a city and a shelter for cultural growth. This metaphor-rich book haven explored full-fledged interpretations of themes from site, literature and mind altogether.